Status Report

NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 9 July 2009

By SpaceRef Editor
July 9, 2009
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NASA ISS On-Orbit Status 9 July 2009

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.

FE-2 Wakata performed the periodic WPA (Water Processor Assembly) sample analysis in the TOCA, after first priming (filling) the TOCA water sample hose.  After the approximately 2 hr TOCA analysis, results were transferred to SSC-5 (Station Support Computer 5) via USB drive for downlink, and the data were also logged for calldown.   [The current procedure is a work-around for TOCA’s failed catalyst.]

The FE-2 also completed the regular sample collection from the WRS PWD (Potable Water Dispenser) ambient & hot lines for in-flight microbial and chemical analysis. [Ambient samples were collected in a small waste water bag (50 mL, flushing) and in a larger bag (200 mL) for inflight TOCA analysis.]

FE-5 DeWinne performed the weekly “T+2d” inflight microbiology analyses for the potable water samples collected on 7/7 for chemical and microbial analysis from the SVO-ZV tap and the SRV-K Warm tap. [In-flight sample analysis was performed with the WMK MCD (Water Microbiology Kit/Microbial Capture Devices) for microbial traces, and the CDB (Coliform Detection Bag) for inflight coliform indications (Magenta for Positive, Yellow for Negative).]

FE-1 Barratt concluded his four-day activity of performing the periodic flow rate adjustment of MFCVs (Manual Flow Control Valves) in the Lab.  Today (Day 4) Mike cleared the access to the Lab Aft Endcone MFCV, requiring temporary relocation of stowage goods.    [Purpose of these valve adjustments is to optimize the ITCS (Internal Thermal Control System) flow throughout the USOS, i.e., to provide sufficient ITCS MTL (Moderate Temperature Loop) flow to support Payload rack operations.]

FE-3 Romanenko undertook his second session of the new Russian behavioral assessment MBI-20 TIPOLOGIA, setting up the workstation, connecting equipment, suiting up and launching the program on the RSK1 laptop. [The CDR assisted him in donning the electrode cap, preparing the head for the electrodes, applying electrode gel from the Neurolab-RM2 kit and taking photographs. Data were recorded on a PCMCIA memory card and downlinked via OCA comm. MBI-20 studies typological features of operator activity of the ISS crews in long-term space flight phases, with the subject using a cap with EEG (electroencephalogram) electrodes. The experiment, which records EEGs, consists of the Lüscher test, “adaptive biological control” training, and the games Minesweeper and Tetris. The Lüscher color diagnostic is a psychological test which measures a person’s psychophysical state, his/her ability to withstand stress, to perform and to communicate. It is believed to help uncover the cause of psychological stress, which can lead to physical symptoms. An EEG measures and records the electrical activity of the brain.]

Afterwards, Roman conducted the periodic inspection of the SRV-K2M Condensate Water Processor’s sediment trap insert. [The Russian SRVK-2M converts collected condensate into drinking water and dispenses the reclaimed potable water].

In the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), Frank DeWinne worked on the TCS (Thermal Control System), connecting the Hydrocyclone system to the WPA2 (Water Pump Assembly 2), after setting up a PFA (Portable Fan Assembly), for subsequent ground-controlled “degassing” of water loop valves.  Afterwards, Hydrocyclone was deinstalled and stowed.

DeWinne undertook another periodic relocation of the TEPC (Tissue Equivalent Proportional Counter) detector assembly, the primary radiation measurement tool in the ISS, moving it in the SM at Panel 327 forward to Panel 324 and rotating it so its length is perpendicular to the SM’s x-axis.  Documentary photographs were then downloaded to SSC (Station Support Computer).

Koichi Wakata, as Subject, undertook the PFE (Periodic Fitness Evaluation) protocol, a monthly 1.5-hr. procedure which checks up on blood pressure and electrocardiogram (ECG) during programmed exercise on the CEVIS cycle ergometer in the US Lab.  Bob Thirsk acted as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). Readings were taken with the BP/ECG (blood pressure/electrocardiograph) and the HRM (heart rate monitor) watch with its radio transmitter. [BP/ECG provides automated noninvasive systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements while also monitoring and displaying accurate heart rates on a continual basis at rest and during exercise.]

CDR Padalka performed the periodic maintenance of the active Russian BMP Harmful Impurities Removal System by starting the "bake-out" cycle to vacuum on absorbent bed #1 of the regenerable dual-channel filtration system. The process will be terminated tonight at ~4:35pm EDT before crew sleep, followed tomorrow by Bed #2 regeneration. (Last time done: 6/18-6/19). [Regeneration of each of the two cartridges takes about 12 hours and is conducted only during crew awake periods. The BMP’s regeneration cycle is normally done every 20 days.]

Frank conducted a session with the MedOps experiment WinSCAT (Spaceflight Cognitive Assessment Tool for Windows), his second onboard session, by logging in on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) laptop and performing the psychological evaluation exercise on the PC-based WinSCAT application. [WinSCAT is a monthly time-constrained questionnaire test of cognitive abilities, routinely performed by astronauts aboard the ISS every 30 days before or after the PHS (periodic health status) test or on special CDR’s, crewmembers or flight surgeons request. The test uses cognitive subtests that measure sustained concentration, verbal working memory, attention, short-term memory, spatial processing, and math skills. The five cognitive subtests are Coding Memory – Learning, Continuous Processing Task (CPT), Match to Sample, Mathematics, and Coding Delayed Recall. These WinSCAT subtests are the same as those used during NASA’s long-duration bed rest studies.]

Working in the Kibo JPM (Japanese Experiment Module Pressurized Module) on final activation of the JEMRMS MA (JEM Robotic Manipulator System Main Arm), Koichi reconfigured the A31p laptop (Channel B) MIL-1553 data cable and its connection to the RLT-BU (Robotics Laptop Terminal Backup) for subsequent BU activation.

Also in Kibo, Bob removed the CBEF (Cell Biology Experiment Facility) stirring fan and temperature controller cover/cylinder from the Micro-G IU (Incubator Unit). 

Koichi then configured the stirring fan so that it could be attached on the CBEF temp controller surface, mounted it there and later installed cables and accessories for CBEF operations, with the video cable connected between CBEF and IPU (Image Processing Unit, J208). 

CDR Padalka reconfigured the REGUL-Packet R/G Channel to work with the REGUL-OS String 1.

Padalka underwent his second periodic (generally monthly) health test with the cardiological experiment PZEh MO-1 (“Study of the Bioelectric Activity of the Heart at Rest”) on the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation System), with Frank DeWinne assisting as CMO (Crew Medical Officer).  Later, FE-3 Romanenko also took the test, with Padalka acting as CMO. [Equipment used were VPG/Temporal Pulsogram and ECG/Electrocardiogram Data Output Devices (USI). During the 30-min. test, the CDR tagged up with ground specialists on an RGS (Russian Groundsite) pass at ~9:30am via VHF for data downlink from the VPG and Gamma-1M ECG for about 5-6 minutes.]

FE-2 Wakata accessed the OGS (Oxygen Generator System) in the Lab by removing equipment from its right door, then conducted purge operations with the HOPA (Hydrogen Sensor ORU Purge Adapter), reconnected the OGS H2 sensor and closed out after the maintenance.

FE-5 DeWinne worked on the WRS (Water Recovery System), removing RFTA (Recycle Filter Tank Assembly) #3 and installing instead RFTA #4 for an RFTA backfill.    [No CEVIS activity allowed during this work.  The removed unit will be returned to the ground for refurbishment.]

DeWinne then performed IFM (In-Flight Maintenance) on the PWD (Potable Water Dispenser), safing (dulling) a sharp edge on the LAB1P4 Z-panel to preclude chafing damage to the PWD Standoff Hose.

Afterwards, Frank set up the A31p for the new IRIS visual perception experiment, performed the experiment for the first time in orbit and transferred the resulting files an SSC hard drive.

DeWinne also filled out his regular weekly FFQ (Food Frequency Questionnaire) on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer). It was Frank’s 6th FFQ session. [On the FFQs, NASA astronauts keep a personalized log of their nutritional intake over time on special MEC software. Recorded are the amounts consumed during the past week of such food items as beverages, cereals, grains, eggs, breads, snacks, sweets, fruit, beans, soup, vegetables, dairy, fish, meat, chicken, sauces & spreads, and vitamins. The FFQ is performed once a week to estimate nutrient intake from the previous week and to give recommendations to ground specialists that help maintain optimal crew health. Weekly estimation has been verified to be reliable enough that nutrients do not need to be tracked daily.]

Gennady Padalka continued preparations for operating the Russian/German TEKh-20 Plasma Crystal-3 Plus (PK-3+) experiment payload, the first time for Expedition 20. [After unstowing and setting up the hardware yesterday in the Service Module (SM), leak checking of the electronics box and evacuation of the vacuum work chamber (ZB) in the SM RO (Work Compartment) with the turbopump, Padalka today conducted more hardware testing and calibration, uploaded new software from a USB stick, checked out the software installation and verified the readiness of the experiment. After starting the turbo pump right after wake-up and conducting additional leak checking on the ZB during the “day”, the CDR will deactivate the turbopump tonight at ~5:25pm EDT. The resulting log file was then downloaded to laptop for downlink via BSR-TM. The experiment is performed on plasma, i.e., fine particles charged and excited by HF (high frequency) radio power inside the evacuated work chamber. Main objective is to obtain a homogeneous plasma dust cloud at various pressures and particle quantities with or without superimposition of an LF (low frequency) harmonic electrical field. The experiment is conducted in automated mode. PK-3+ has more advanced hardware and software than the previously used Russian PKE-Nefedov payload.]

The FE-4 completed the weekly 10-min. CWC (Collapsible Water Container) inventory as part of on-going WRM (Water Recovery & Management) assessment of onboard water supplies. Updated “cue cards” based on the crew’s water calldowns are sent up every other week. [The new card (20-0055F) lists 44 CWCs (~1,082.4 L total) for the four types of water identified on board: 1. technical water (32 CWCs with 840.9 L, for Elektron electrolysis, incl. 323.5 L to be used as reserve water, 341.2 L for flushing only due to Wautersia bacteria & 176.2 L in 4 clean bags for contingency use, 2. potable water (6 CWCs with 174.0 L, of which 3.0 L (1 bag) are currently off-limit pending ground analysis results), the remainder good for contingency use, 3. condensate water (3 CWCs, all empty), 4. waste/EMU dump and other (3 CWCs with 67.5 L). Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

The crew completed their regular daily 2.5-hr. physical workout program on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (FE-2, FE-5), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation (CDR, FE-1, FE-3, FE-4), RED resistive exercise device (FE-1, FE-2, FE-3, FE-4, FE-5) and VELO cycle ergometer with bungee cord load trainer (CDR). [The interim RED is being this week in lieu of the ARED until the latter has had its damaged VIS dashpot replaced and can be put back in service.]

Later, DeWinne transferred the exercise data files to the MEC for downlink, including the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data of the workouts on RED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photography can be studied at this “Gateway” website: (as of 9/1/08, this database contained 770,668 views of the Earth from space, with 324,812 from the ISS alone).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 6:54am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude — 346.7 km
Apogee height – 351.8 km
Perigee height — 341.6 km
Period — 91.47 min.
Inclination (to Equator) — 51.64 deg
Eccentricity — 0.0007614
Solar Beta Angle — 73.6 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day — 15.74
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours — 72 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) — 60946

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
07/11/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A launch – JEM EF, ELM-ES, ICC-VLD; (7:39am EDT)
07/12/09 — Progress 33P Re-rendezvous attempt (closest approach 10m; ~1:06pm) & separation
07/13/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A docking; ~3:25pm (if launched nominally 7/11)
07/13/09 — Progress 33P deorbit burn, entry interface (11:45am; 12:20pm)
07/24/09 — Progress 34P launch
07/25/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A undocking; ~7:33am
07/27/09 — STS-127/Endeavour/2J/A landing (KSC, ~12:26pm)
07/27/09 — Progress 34P docking (if STS-127 departs nominally; can slip to 7/29)
07/31/09 — PMA-3 relocation
08/18/09 — STS-128/Discovery/17A – MPLM (P), LMC (~4:25am EDT)
09/10/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) launch (~1:00pm EDT)
09/16/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) berth w/SSRMS
09/29/09 — Progress 34P undock
09/30/09 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S launch
10/02/09 — Soyuz TMA-16/20S docking (SM aft, until MRM-2 w/new port)
10/08/09 — H-IIB (JAXA HTV-1) unberth
10/11/09 — Soyuz TMA-14/18S undock
10/15/09 — Progress 35P launch
11/10/09 — 5R/MRM-2 (Russian Mini Research Module 2) on Soyuz-U
11/12/09 — STS-129/Atlantis/ULF3 – ELC1, ELC2
12/07/09 — Soyuz TMA-17/21S launch
12/26/09 — Progress 36P launch
02/03/10 — Progress 37P launch
02/04/10 — STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 + Cupola
03/18/10 — STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC
04/02/10 — Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch
04/27/10 — Progress 38P launch
05/14/10 — STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1
05/29/10 — Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch
06/25/10 — Progress 39P launch
07/29/10 — STS-133/Endeavour/ULF5 – ELC4, MPLM
08/11/10 — Progress 40P launch
09/16/10 — STS-134/Discovery/ULF6 – ELC3, AMS
09/29/10 — Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch
10/19/10 — Progress 41P launch
11/??/10 — ATV2 – Ariane 5 (ESA)
12/??/11 — 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton

SpaceRef staff editor.